Home surveillance footage shows the terrifying close call when a truck passed a stopped school bus while a girl was waiting to board in West Haven Tuesday.
It happened around 7:30 a.m. on Allings Crossing Road. Police tracked down the driver in the video, who will have to pay a $470 fine for ignoring the bus’s stop sign.
That kind of driving is something people worry happens far too often.
“That’s terrible. That kid could’ve easily been hit,” West Haven resident Nicole Hazen said after watching the video.
Many residents were shocked and concerned to see the video of the truck blowing by the stopped bus. The bus driver pounded on the horn as the girl waited to cross the street a few steps away.
“You want the kids to be safe out there and people driving like that, it’s just … you can’t have it,” Gary Hazen said.
The frightening incident is prompting the school district to sound off again, warning people behind the wheel to keep it safe with summer over and kids back on the street. Stopping for school buses is the law.
“It could’ve led to a tragedy and we’re begging people to obey the laws and be conscientious of school buses and kids waiting,” West Haven Superintendent Neil Cavallaro said. “Think about what could have been today. It sends a strong message, please keep that in your mind.”
Misael Mercado is a senior at West Have High School and said unfortunately, that kind of driving isn’t a rarity.
“Getting off the bus is definitely a safety hazard. Not everyone always listens to the law. It’s upsetting because you never know,” he said.
A school resource officer tracked down the driver, who was issued a $470 fine for passing a school bus. Parents said the swift justice is some consolation, but they wouldn’t mind seeing the fines raised even higher, or even more severe punishments.
“When it comes down to it, you run over the kid, besides killing the child you have to live with it the rest of your life,” Scott Simone said. “I don’t think there’s any in between. It’s just like texting. There should be no in between.”
Police did not release the name of the truck’s driver.
The school district praised the bus driver for doing all they could to get the attention of the truck driver, but said the incident should be a warning to everyone on the road: watch out for school buses.